tv The Last Word With Lawrence O Donnell MSNBC May 22, 2017 7:00pm-8:01pm PDT
>> wow. >> that's the trick. if depending on their sophistication, they would have taken steps to erase the history or else to use throwaway, throwaway phones in order to hide their trarks as cracks. >> yes. >> thank you for being with us tonight. i appreciate it. our msnbc coverage continues now. we'll be covering the latest from manchester, england, all night. i'll remind you that we are awaiting any minute now live briefing from the manchester police department, which of course is the lead agency on this tonight as we start to get more and more scraps of intelligence and information what may have happened here. but, again, the terrible bottom line here is we believe 19 people have died. my colleague brian williams picks up our coverage now. good evening, brian. >> good evening, rachel, and thank you. our colleague lawrence o'donnell is up in boston tonight at a family event. so we're going to devote this next hour to continuing coverage of this breaking story that rachel has just been covering.
and that is the explosion at the manchester arena tonight in the uk. more video is coming on to social media. and as the night draws on, i'm sure we'll get more imagery. but you've probably become familiar by now with this. one of the first clips of video we saw. it happened just after the lights went up, just after the last note. and ariana grande went backstage. that's when people heard and felt a concussion outside. still, some discussion as to whether or not there was just one or more explosions. we've been what, three hours of coverage with sporadic reports, including by this network that this was a suicide bomber, outside on a kind of level that connects the train station to the venue.
let's go first to the police briefing. manchester police department. someone has just stepped to the microphones. >> around 10:33 p.m., we received reports of an explosion at manchester arena in the city center. this was at the conclusion of ariana grande concert. currently we have 19 people confirmed to have lost their lives in the explosion, and around 50 casualties that have been treated at six hospitals across greater manchester. my thoughts are very much with those that have been injured and lost their lives and their loved ones at this terrible time. we are doing all that we can to support them. officers from greater manchester police and emergency services are working at the scene and are supporting those affected. we are coordinating the operation here at greater manchester police headquarters. an emergency number is available for all those concerned about
their loved ones or anyone who may have been in the area. the number 0161-856-9400. we are currently treating this as a terrorist incident until we have further information. we're working closely with national counterterrorism policing network and uk intelligence partners. this is clearly a very concerning time for everyone. we're doing all that we can working with local and national agencies to support those affected. as we gather information about what happened last night. as you'll understand, we are still receiving information and updates. so we'll provide further detail when we have a clearer picture. i want to thank people for their support and ask them to remain
vigilant. and if they have any concerns at all, to report them to the national anti-terrorist hotline. the number is 0800-789-321. it is important also that people in manchester avoid the area around manchester arena so that emergency services can continue to effectively deal with the incident at that location. thank you very much. . that was the chief constable with the greater manchester police department. and that, as you heard him say, will be the only official statement. it is the first official on camera statement by the police department in greater manchester after this tragedy that you're seeing unfold over and over again as these various views of it come in from social media. kelly cobiella, our correspondent in our london bure has been cerin since the first word that something had gone wrong tonight in
manchester. kelly? >> yeah, brian, and we first learned of this at about 10:30 local time. we were seeing reports on social media of some sort of explosion possibly at the ariana grande concert in manchester. and there was a lot of confusion at that point just in those first few minutes, several minutes or so. reports on social media saying maybe it was something inside the concert venue, outside the concert venue. it was very unclear. then we started seeing some of these videos pop up, including one taken from a dash cam outside of the arena. and i'm not sure if we have that available. but in this dash cam video, you can actually hear the sound of an explosion, and you see a bright flash. even at this point. it wasn't very clear whether or not what was happening. was this an equipment malfunction or was it something much more sinister as we now have learned, possibly a suicide bomber.
there were eyewitness reports of just absolute chaos at that arena as these young people tried to get out. this is ariana grande. she has a huge young fan base. this concert hall holds about 21,000 people. so it would have been a massive crush for the exits. there were reports initially of people with cuts, with bloody faces, it wasn't clear whether they were some sort of explosive injuries or if they had been injured trying to get out of the arena. we later learned from some paramedics, volunteer first responders on the scene that they were treating shrapnel-like injuries. and we've also heard subsequently from a number of eyewitnesses that this was in fact an explosion. one witness telling local media here that he was there to pick up his wife and daughter who had
been at the concert. the concert had just finished. people were coming out. he was approaching the arena. he said he was fairly close to the blast, and that it threw him back 30 feet. when he came to, he said that he just saw carnage, bodies. so that gives you a sense of what it was like outside this concert hall. still a very active scene. manchester police have cordoned off that area. it's right next to a very central train station, the victoria train station actually covers part of that train station, which was recently renovated. and so all of that area in central manchester, greater manchester being the second biggest city in this country. very center of this city tonight closed off as police continue this investigation. and just one more note for you, brian, we are hearing from multiple senior u.s. law enforcement officials. they're saying they have been
briefed by their counterparts in the uk, and that the belief is that this was in fact a suicide bomber, and that they have identified him already. no word on the id. but based on forensic evidence at the scene there, they have a good idea of who this is. brian? >> all right, kelly cobiella from our london bureau, bringing us right up to the minute there. our justice correspondent pete williams is also looking into this all evening long on this side of the atlantic in our washington bureau. pete, what have you learned? >> well, a couple of points here, brian. it's been roughly four and a half hours since this happened. and the casualty numbers really haven't changed much in the last three hours or so, which i suppose is a good sign that they're not going to get worse. now, we don't know of the 50 or so injured how severe their injuries are, weather some of
them are in critical condition, and that number of people killed could change. but it hasn't changed in the last couple of hours. the attack happened -- roughly you heard the constable say they got the call at 10:33. we are told by witnesses this is about 10 minutes after the concert ended. and people were already starting to file out that is the key point. the authorities tell us that they believe the suicide bomber was outside the venue, outside the concert hall, near the box office. now if that's the case, based on a map of the concert venue, that would be near the train station, near the manchester victoria train station, which is immediately adjacent to the arena. the train station is the building where you see the letter a and arena. it's that building just below the er in manchester. that's the big train station there. if it was at the box office, it's right near the train station as well which would
indicate why the train station has been closed since just after this happened. you heard kelly say that the initial indication is they believe it's a suicide bomber that's from the forensic evidence that they have found at the scene. we have been told, as she said by both u.s. and uk authorities that the uk authorities believe they have identified the suspected bomber. now, of course, that immediately sets a very urgent chain of investigation going. who is that person in contact with. they will immediately try to look at that person's telephone calls, computer messages, because they not only for the sake of the case to close out who did it, but they want to know if anyone else is involved. if any other people are planning similar attacks. was this person operating on his own? was he part of a larger cell? that's the critical question for uk authorities tonight. and they are a very aggressively working that, based on their tentative identification.
they will of course try to trace anything that they can that was used to make the bomb, try to see where those components came from, and that will be another line of inquiry for them. but seeing if that person was connected to anybody else, whether they uncover a larger terror plot, that's a very key question. we heard some earlier evening some controlled explosions around the area as the police search the area for suspicious packages. none of those turned out to be hazardous items. and the only other thing that i would say here in terms of the response in the u.s., the department of homeland security has put out a statement saying that u.s. citizens in that area should follow the directions of the local authorities. but here at home they say we have no information to indicate a specific credible threat involving music venues in the u.s., but, homeland says, the public may see increased security in and around public
places and events as officials take additional precautions. we're told that they're not giving any directions to law enforcement officials in the u.s. to do anything differently. nonetheless, nypd has done what it normally does. when ever there is an attack anywhere in the world, without waiting to be told, they immediately beef up their presence at public place, in times square, at train stations. and outside yankee stadium where there is a baseball game tonight, they know of no -- we're tloeld are no music concerts in the new york city area. as you know, broadway is usually dark on monday nights, no performances. no other large public gatherings. we haven't heard of any other cities doing something similar. >> pete williams in our washington newsroom. pete, thank you for all of that reporting. and apropos of our discussion about the nypd, let's bring in our next two guests. first of all, we have former police commissioner bill bratton. we're happy he was able to join us here in the studio tonight.
well also shawn henry former assistant director of the fbi. commissioner bratton, i was thinking of you tonight, looking at anti-terrorism squads deployed in new york city in just the last three hours. what is without giving away the store, kind of the procedure when something like this happens in an overseas capital? >> fortunately, the relationships between particularly the british police services and those here in new york are extraordinarily close and intimate. >> don't you have people in london? >> there is a full-time detective there, another in euro pol, several in france. so information coming quickly from that source as well as relationships that my predecessor has the ability to call. the commission of the metropolitan police london. in this case, paul fahey, the chief constable in manchester there are relationship there's that allow for intimacy of exchange of information.
what new york city started doing very quickly, at any given time they have several hundred officers and the new units we created, critical response, counterterrorism, and 800 person unit strategically response group which polices large demonstration, all equipped with long guns and the appropriate gear. the department has brought in a lot more dogs. they're constantly expanding the paperweight dog program. so you'll see tonight in new york city, subway station, down madison square garden, whether or not they're open tonight, over in brooklyn, the stadium there. yankee stadium certainly where there is a game tonight that a lot of additional coverage out of caution. there is no information that the nypd is working with tonight. or u.s. police services of any known threat directed at anything in the united states at this moment in terms of the issue in england, england has the significant problem of about 500 fighters have been known to
return from syria and are back in england. and they are certainly a significant concern. these are people who went and fought in syria, picked up all types of skills and they're now back. that's in addition to the many hundreds if not thousands that are always concerned with over there in any event. so in terms of whether there was any early warning about this event, that's something that we'll look to be determined over the next course of hours as the investigation goes forward. >> how do you keep a place like times square safe? in just the past few day, to use the terminology of the nypd, we had an edp, an emotionally disturbed person, driving a vehicle. probably they say under the influence of something. just plowing through innocent civilians. people i think have more situational awareness when they're here in new york and in big metropolitan areas. but how do you keep such a place safe?
>> the main thrust is to try to prevent before the fact. the idea that the nypd under my predecessor ray kelly created an extraordinary intelligence gathering capability. also thousand personnel assigned to the intelligence counterterrorism function. during my time, the additional 1300 uniformed officers that we put in very specifically to deal with the isis threat, the idea of the lone wolf. has extraordinary capabilities to try to identify a threat before it occurs. more than two dozen have been thwarted since 9/11 that we're aware of. the idea is you can't protect everywhere against everything. that's the reality of it. quite frankly, law enforcement was just amazed over these many years that we don't have more incidents than we do. and whether that's good luck or the fact that we are able to prevent so many of them we really don't know.
but the threat situation is what we reinforce with the message to the public. be aware. but don't live in fear. because the reality is as many of these incidents that are occurring, the likelihood of it still happening to you individually, the odds are still in your favor. but as we see here in manchester, and with increasing freaksly, that is the concern, these events increasing in frequency. >> yeah. >> and we don't see that lessening at all going forward. >> commissioner and shawn, please stand by one moment. we've been able to make contact with elaine wilcox with itv in the uk. she is live in manchester, and has been able to join us via facetime tonight. elaine, tell what's you see and tell what's you have seen. >> yes, you join me in the center of manchester. intense police activity here some hours after this explosion. this was a targeted explosion on concert in the heart of
manchester. we understand ariana grande was performing. a sellout packed concert in the manchester arena, a very well established concert hall in manchester. at about 10:35 our time we understand there was reports of an explosion. chaotic, terrifying scenes as the performer had just left stage. ariana grande was safe. she just left stage. people were making their way to the exits, and there was this loud explosion. very, very sad news tonight that police have confirmed that 19 people have died, and upwards of 50 people have been injured, and the police have confirmed they are treating this as a terrorist incident. a targeted attack on a concert in the heart of manchester. a concert which was packed full of families and young people. chaotic scenes. people desperately trying to escape from the terrifying
scenes. people describing that explosion. nuts and bolts goi off in that explosion. very, very confused picture. early reports suggest this was some kind of improvised explosion. but 19 people confirmed dead. upwards of 50 people injured. and this targeted attack on a concert in manchester. >> elaine willcox with itv, thanks very much for being with us from there tonight. back here in our studio in new york, shawn henry, formally of the fbi. i was trying to find a way to describe this situation in man chester to an american audience. best i can come up with is if you've been to penn station in new york, on top of it sits madison square garden. the manchester arena was built similarly in using the air rights over their old victoria train station. and there is a level when you come up on the escalators with a box office, that kind of thing
where there is always an event coming or going, and trains arriving and departing. the question to you, this is one big -- sadly, one big soft target. do you think it was intentional there? do you think this was a thwarted effort of someone to gain access to the concert? >> well, you know, only the investigation is going to tell us, brian, and that's going to take over the next days and possibly weeks. we know that terrorist organizations have targeted these soft targets. concert venue, stadiums, and transportation venues. in this particular situation the way you have described it, it's not clear what was being targeted, if somebody was perhaps being approached. maybe they were walking down into the subway system. they saw a police officer. they got scared. they detonated. perhaps they tried to make access into the stadium, but they weren't able to get. in or perhaps the terrorists themselves are actually changing their tactics, recognizing that these targets are becoming more hardened, that there is a lot more perimeter security
preventing them from gaining access. therefore, as the venue goers leave, they target the people there as they're congregating, walk do you think to get into the subway area. so there is a large throng of people. their purpose is to inflict as much harm and devastation and carnage as possible. and they want to do that in an wraer there is the maximum number of casualties. 19 people dead, 50 wounded. not clear yet as to the types of injuries. but there may be more. >> again, to our viewer, we are being told that the police there are treating this as a terror incident. certainly all our reporting indicates one man, a suicide bomber. the initial investigators who arrived on the scene found what was apparently early and rather incontrovertible evidence of that in the ghoulish scene that they arrived to. commissioner bratton, if this was targeting an exit, that is
kind of just worse than anything imaginable. this is ariana grande. her fan base is teenaged girls. >> teenagers. >> and you're coming out of a concert. it's a terrific time. you're not thinking of situational awareness and all those adult concerns. >> well, the terrorist tactics are evolving with time. and as he just pointed out, why go through the risk of being detected, trying to get into a stadium? we saw that in the incident in france, paris a while back. the soft target outside. there might be security out there. but you're not prevented from carrying a bag or rolling a piece of luggage, particularly near a transportation center. and my understanding from where this occurred, it's directly across from the entrance to the victoria station. so a lot of the early reporting was from the transit police. because evidently, they were right there. so the idea is that manchester
second largest city in england, london, new york, there are large crowds everywhere. and you might want to do it in a public space because then it's actually more visible to the media. if you're doing it in a closed space, media can't get in. but in a public space, media access early on. so it gets more publicity, more attention as we're seeing with the videos that you're showing us this evening. >> we tend to look to electronics and science to help us. and solve our problems. especially the ghoulish, vexing problem of terrorism. how good are the electronics, the imagery in a city like new york? i was once told a few years back if you were anywhere around times square, had a bag or a briefcase, put it down and exited, that that would light up the attention of the nypd just based on the sheer number of cameras and how sophisticated the imagery is. >> without going into some of
the intimacies of the capabilities that they're constantly evolving and improving. the idea being how to identify. you're looking for somebody with a red jacket in a crowded space like times square to start identifying only those people wearing a red jacket. sometimes square probably more so than any place on earth with maybe the exception of london has more cameras. the event the other day, the incident with the individual driving the car, the camera angles there were enormous amount of camera footage of that event. and that's constantly expanding. we're about to have 30,000 of our new york city police officers wearing body cameras, for example. so the technology is constantly improving both to our dentment and to our benefit. you've heard certainly myself and now my successor jimmy o'neal and many other police official, fbi directors talking about the idea of the encrypted apps that the terrorists are now frequently using.
that's technology advance that has worked dramatically against police being able to follow these people on social media. the new threat, the one that we have no idea of the extent of it is drones. we're spending a lot of time at any company looking at the drone issue. open stadium space, you fly a couple of those drones, in even if you don't do anything with them, you scare the hell out of people. the videos you just saw of the crowd fleeing, the injuries of people trying to get out of a stadium. now we understand those drones can be equipped with devices that can carry several hundred pounds. the ability to disseminate chemicals, biological types of issues in addition to bombs. we're on a new frontier with the advancing technology that's so commonplace. where it all ends up, who knows at this stage. the good news is that law enforcement is really trying to stay ahead of the curve, constantly trying to think ahead rather than just look into the
past. >> gentlemen, stand by with us. we want to bring in juan zerata, juan is former deputy national security adviser in the area of terrorism during the george w. bush administration, among other posts and other jobs. juan, first of all, anything you can add to our coverage thus far? i know you were part of the coverage when the initial word came in from manchester. >> brian, i don't think we're learning anything more. obviously, the fact that they -- british officials think that they've identified the perpetrator of the attack is incredibly significant. as pete williams suggested, that is going the trigger not only the forensics around this event, but all of the digital trail forensics that the investigators will look at to understand motivations of this individual, relationships, potentially other support networks that could be a threat in the uk.
u.s. officials are going to be supporting that effort quite aggressively. the good news is that the u.s. and the uk as you know, brian, have a deep and robust intelligence sharing relationship, the best in the world. and so for the most part, whatever information the u.s. has, the british already have. and they're going to be looking through that information to see if there is anything that they can find or divine that will tell them more about this event and perhaps allow them to prevent other attacks. one other thing that we've noted before in prior coverage is that the british have been undertaking a number of arrests in recent weeks. especially in the wake of a parliament attack in march. they've been very aggressive in trying to make arrests and roll up potential suspects in other plots. and so the reality is the british authorities are very good at their job. they are often, though, overwhelmed by the volume of suspects in cases they have to
cover. and they as a result have to prioritize. what may emerge out of this, brian, was the realization that this is an individual who is known to authority, but may have fallen down the list of priorities as a result. we just don't know yet, of course. but that has been the track record and the fact in the past where you have individuals who are suspects who may have been trained or inspired by a group like isis or al qaeda who then go about purposing a terrible attack on a soft target like this. and so we'll just have to see what the information provides. but u.s. authorities are tracking this very carefully. >> juan, i was going to ask you, the raids that have been going on have not received any news media attention over here with the press of news that we've had. but i was going to ask you the chances that this could be related to any number of those raids. someone who had become in effect jostled because of it, exposed, weaponized, any number of things. >> that's always possible,
brian. and we saw that happen in france and belgium where a number of the arrests seemed to have triggered or accelerated some of the plotting that was already under way. and so that may be the case here. it's not clear at all. the arrests that we have seen in recent weeks have been in london, not in manchester. but these networks often flow freely between cities in the uk. and so it's hard to tell at this point without knowing more of the individual networks. the british authorities have to worry about three categories of suspects, those that perhaps have been to iraq and syria or some other jihadi play field and battlefield and who have been sent back to attack in place. so that's a worry. and bill bratton mentioned that you have approximately 500 of those individuals that they have to worry about. you also have homegrown radicalized individuals who are either viewing the net or are being radicalized by fellow citizens. they've got the worry than as well.
and then finally, there is a lineage there is a jihadi support network in the uk that the british have had to worry about for a number of years. ties to pakistani and bangladeshi cell, for example, that they have to be worried about. so the reality is they are often overwhelmed. they're incredibly good at their jobs. but they often have to prioritize. and we'll just have see the what the information provides in terms of networks and connectivity to others who may be part of jihadi networks and cells. >> juan zarate is our senior national security analyst. juan, thank you very much for being part of our coverage tonight. and give us a ring should you learn anything new. 10:30 eastern time. we are still covering this breaking news event in manchester, uk where officials tonight, theirst and only on-camera briefing of the evening have put the death toll at 19 with approximately 50 injured.
apparently, apparently a lone suicide bomber at what could be construed as one of the exit points of an ariana grande concert tonight in manchester. a lot of her teenaged fans, we're judging by the imagery coming out. a lot of girls joined by their moms. some families just terrific event until the last note, until the lights went up in the arena. that's when people first became aware of the concussion of the blast. jonathan dienst is a long-time investigative reporter with our nbc station here in new york. someone we often call upon during these hours after an event. jonathan, what can you add to our coverage? >> well, really, it's the forensics at the scene right now that are telling the story. and u.s. officials who are being briefed by the brits say, again,
as you were just saying, a lone actor outside that stadium believed to be with some sort of backpack bomb, perhaps filled with nails that inflicted some of the damage. and it's the stampede that resulted in numerous other injuries at the concert outside that concert. and the question, how long was he waiting outside before detonating that device. that one of the questions. they're also working off what they believe is a tentative id of this suspect. and they are working around the clock, trying to track that suspect and whether that name in fact matches the body parts and the materials that are found at that suicide bombing scene. the other thing they're working off is tracking some of the digital media, some of the claims there have been claims on the internet, on twitter of responsibility. and they're looking to see if any of those are legitimate and are linked to this attack, or
are linked to any sort of cell. none that of is confirmed. but they are working that piece as well. the brits, the u.s. authorities trying to track all of that. meanwhile, here in the u.s., no new specific threat information. but as a precaution here in new york, as pete williams was describing earlier, as commissioner bratton was, the nypd ramped up security, sending police to times square to outside yankee stadium where there was a baseball game tonight, to other major locations where there are large crowds, large number of tourist, all precautionary. the nypd does this all the time, other cities, other regions probably taking similar measures as well as monitoring events over there. but lone actor outside that arena, outside that stadium in manchester. and the question is whether this person was a lone actor or had any help in building that bomb and carrying out this plot, and whether obviously the concern is
are there any other cell members out there plotting to do additional attacks. obviously those are the concerns at this hour. >> our contributing reporter. our thanks to jonathan dienst here at our nbc news headquarters in new york. shawn henry, quick question. has anything been done to change the fact that what people often worry about most is a single individual whose determined, who is weaponized in their ability to bring about a death toll like this. >> well, that's certainly from a law enforcement perspective the most difficult thing to prevent. when we've had success, nypd, the fbi, joint terrorism task force, it really has been an interdicting some of the cells where there has been a lot of communication there have been people involved in raising money. they've been involved in doing reconnaissance of sites. and there have been indicators that have helped law enforcement identify and disrupt some of the cells. when you've got some of these lone individuals who are
self-radicalized, they're going into these chat rooms. they're communicating with people through social media. it is not well covered by law enforcement or the intelligence agencies. and it's very, very difficult to be able to identify and disrupt that type of an attacker. i think what we'll find here, the law enforcement and intelligence agencies in the first hour, they're responding. they're trying to find victims. it's a recovery effort. then it turns into this investigation. >> yeah. >> are there other devices in the area? and then beyond that are, there other co-conspirators? are there other attacks in play. when we look back at happen had in paris and in brussels last year we saw effective law enforcement actions going out. dozens of search warrants being served around the country. those multiple cities, and successfully disrupting other attacks where they're able to identify co-conspirators who had gathered improvised explosive devices, weapons, et cetera. they were planning other attacks.
and that aggressive law enforcement action enabled police to save lives. i think that's what may be happening here. it may be the so-called lone wolf, but posture is to identify others that will be done through the dna they'll get to identify the attacker, to work collaboratively with law enforcement and intelligence agencies globally to try and identify if in fact there are other members of that the final piece, brian, the signatures of the device. if they look for the triggering mechanism, the type of shrapnel that was involved, they may be able to identify a signature that might tie it back to a bomb maker, again, connecting them to another cell. >> let's talk about those outer concentric rings of this, and what's happening tonight. viewers of our broadcast will recognize jeremy bash as being a frequent contributor, mostly on the subject of politics. but jeremy, as a former chief of staff at cia and the department
of defense is very familiar with the mechanism that is being worked tonight. jeremy, the brits are awfully good at this. and the two countries are so close. it's why so many people in your old line of work and in the intelligence agencies were so upset by that u.s. british intelligence dust-up a few weeks back. having said that, what is this lighting up in the intelligence community tonight? what just got activated? >> well, i think out of the intelligence agencies in northern virginia principally, the national counterterrorism center and the central intelligence agencies counterterrorist center, the working hypothesis has to be that this individual was part of a network. and why do i say that tonight, brian is this is not a truck attack, a knife attack, somebody driving their car, their rent a car down westminster bridge. this is an individual who researched an opportune time to target innocent civilians, kids,
really, teenagers coming out of a concert and do so with a sophisticated detonation device and building a bomb, financing it, recruiting the individual to go there, training that person, that requires more than one person usually acting alone. yes, somebody could go on the internet and get the recipe for the bomb and try to build it themselves. but normally the kind of person who is going to go out and commit suicide there on the spot is not someone with the sophistication, the means, the technical ability to build the device that would detonate and kill 19 people. so i think the working hypothesis brian, tonight, has to be by our intelligence agencies that this individual was part of a network. now we turn to what network. obviously, in england, there has been concerns about terrorism for a long time. this is the deadliest attack since the july 7th, 2005 bombings in central london. the so-called central london 77 attacks. those claimed the lives of 56 people. but by and large, the intelligence and law
enforcement, counterterrorism forces in the uk have been outstanding. they have disrupted many more plots that have been successful. in fact, you can really only count to a few number of deadly attacks that have happened since the 77 plots. one was on this day in may as 2003 when a british soldier was attacked in the streets and decapitated, attacked by two gun and knife-wielding assailants who claimed allegiance to isis. and there have been a few other incidents. but this is clearly the biggest attack inside the uk in about a dozen years. >> and jeremy, when all this gets lit up, what -- is there any change in electronics? because this mean that data vacuums are turned on, or are they just newly directed? >> well, they are on already, brian. and i think what your other guests have referenced i would concur with, which is first they will go to the scene of the
crime, the scene of the incident and try to get as much information off the individual. what were the biometrics that the person has? what were their fingerprints? what is other information, things about their clothing, things about the device itself that they can then potentially trace to a location. i predict you'll see in the next 24 hours the door-kicking raids we've become accustomed to seeing throughout europe where they'll go, look at places where this individual worked, where this person lived, where their family lives. maybe this person is british born. we've seen that before. we saw that in the westminster bridge attacker. that individual was british born. maybe we'll see this person has traveled, traveled potentially to syria, to places that isis controls. these are the typical things you would see in this investigation. and yes, undoubtedly intelligence agencies will be looking for electronic intercepts. they'll be looking at phone conversation, e-mails, other things that could connect this individual to a broader terrorist network. we should note we've been talk,
mostly focusing on isis. however, al qaeda, don't count them out. al qaeda has had sophisticated operatives. they are trying again to reclaim the mantle of the yee had that isis has been dominant in over the last three, four years. al qaeda does have followers. we saw a recent call by one of the living sons of osama bin laden to conduct attacks in the west and to reclaim the manhattan to feel jihad. so i think intelligence agencies will be looking at al qaeda, at al qaeda's capabilities. and brian, it cannot escape our notice that this happens against the backdrop of an american president who is in the middle east tonight, talking with our most important counterterrorism partners about what? about isis, about al qaeda, about the threat of sunni extremism, and other forces of extremism in the region that are exporting their extremism and their capabilities in part to western europe and potentially to the united states. our president tonight is in the region. he is talking to the israelis. he just came from a summit in riyadh with our important
counterterrorism there's. the saudis, the emiratis, the egyptian, other countries. this is foremost on the minds of them whether this attack is in any way connected to that trip remains to be seen. but it cannot escape the notice of america working with our allies in the middle east to try to stop the very attacks we saw tonight in manchester. >> jeremy, it's one of the first things i thought of when the evening's coverage started making that turn toward terrorism from some other cause at this concert. the president is overseas. noting where the president was, the president and netanyahu have public appearances for tomorrow. >> that's right, brian. and, again, our work with israel, our work with the gulf countries is focused in large part on iran, but is also very importantly focused on isis. and dealing with the territory that isis now controls in syria and partially in iraq. so many of the plots that we
have seen, not just in europe, but in fact throughout the southeast asia have been connected in some way, shape or form to isis' command and control there in raqqah, in syria. and we tend to refer to some of these attackers as lone wolves. it's really a term that has come and gone. because these individuals are not just self-inspired, self radicalized and made self-capable by their activities. they're connect to a much larger network. where they got their inspiration, whether it was a website, a chat room, a telegram chat, some sort of online radicalization usually can tell us the origin of the radicalization, where they're connected and where other plots might be coming from. >> jeremy bash, thank you. commissioner bratton remains here with us in our studio. do you agree with jeremy's points? sounded good to me, that lone wolf is not an accurate term to use.
>> no, i think it's still accurate because you've heard the term operating on their own. we've had ten abled that they learn how to make the bomb. think of the two brothers in boston. and we certainly had the directed types of attacks that we've seen so frequently in europe. so lone wolf i still think is an appropriate term across all three of those. no matter what their inspiration and motivation. his point about al qaeda, though, i think is very important. al qaeda is still very strong. it still has five centers of operation. isis has six or seven -- actually more than that around the world. but al qaeda is trying to get back in the game again. so you have an entity that was really in the background for so long, back in competition again. so i think we're going see both
isis-i kn isis-inspired directed as well as al qaeda. >> what a ghoulish business. jim cavanaugh is one of the experts who always comes on the air with us after we're covering some event like this. jim is a retired atf special agent in charge for over three decades. jim, to shawn's point, you roll up on the scene if you're a first responder. you're not really thinking about keeping the evidence pristine. you are doing triage and trying to save lives. police respond in first, second, third wave. they're getting a little bit more sophisticated as they work from the center out, helping those whose lives can be saved. and then wondering what went on here. but the bomb guys, the explosive experts have a lot of evidence to go through now. >> no, that's right, brian. you have a lot of evidence to go through. bomb investigators have been to
many, many bomb scenes, taught bomb investigation, worked in cases, bombings, remote control bomb, mail bombs, murder bomb, suicide bombs all over the country you. get there, the scene is hot. you go to the seat of the blast. you have to sweep for secondaries. that's what the bomb squad has to do to make it safe. sometimes the device is partially detonated. sometimes it's completely detonated. we call it the slang in the business we call it the crater. when you have a suicide bomber, likely the crater is in his back. so it's pretty evident that that's where the explosion, the epicenter or the seat of the blast, or we call it the crater. that usually yields us the most evidence. we can get a good look at what the bomb is there. from the seat of the blast. and take it back. you know, we've talked a lot about what the intelligence services are doing worldwide. and everything that's been said by shawn and the commissioner and jeremy i agree with. they're right about that. that's all spun up. but when you're a command other
tonight ground, and bill bratton knows this and so does shawn henry, when you're a commander there on the ground, all those questions are not facing you. the big question facing you is there a secondary device somewhere. if that's okay for the most part, the next question is this guy that delivered the bomb the bomb maker. and that's the pressing question for the commander. he's got to find out. you know, i gave a talk to the iecp years ago talking about this, and had learned about a mistake we made on the d.c. sniper case when the snipers nailed a letter to a tree. and everybody handled that for instancically so delicately that we didn't open it. and hours passed where the snipers wanted us to make a phone contact with them. but we passed the time because we were handling it like it was such particular evidence. 10 the talk i gave tati ecp is once it's safe, once there is no secondaries, run right in there,
get his wallet, fingerprint him, get that back out to the authorities in the uk, to the fbi so all this terrorism centers that are now spun up and are spinning up can do all the great things they do. but second to that is you've got to find out, go right to this guy's house, apartment. did he make the bomb or did somebody else make the bomb. that's a crucial question in england tonight. >> jim, how much of an art form is it without giving away details to make the size bomb we have likely seen tonight, if this is indeed what we think it is? and more than that, how stable are these explosives, assuming that this bomb maker, or the suicide bomber, him or herself had to travel a distance to get to this venue? >> well, if you're going to personally trigger a suicide bomb, it's the simplest triggering and fuse system. you can push the trigger if it's electrically fused or you can
light the mast if it's nonelectrically fused. it's very simple. it doesn't need any time delay or complicated mechanism at all. that's why terrorists love them. as far as the stability of the explosive material, if it's a commercial explosives or military explosives, it's extremely stable. it could be carried for miles. it's made like that for the military or for construction business. if it's a homemade concoction like thpt, it's extremely unstable and very risky to carry. but of course if you're on a suicide mission, you're not too worried about that. the backpack is going to be very heavy. the guy waited at some point. it will be interesting to see. was he loitering at victoria station? did he come across? was he loitering at the box office? he wanted the crowd. he got in the crowd. and i think we ought to just also say we aren't absolutely sure from this. all we've heard, whether it absolutely is a terrorist bombing connected to a terrorist group, people do kill themselves
with bombs. they do get homicidal with bombs. they do want to seek revenge. there is a lot of human motives you just can't see right away. and the uk police didn't tell us. they just said we're investigating as a terrorist bombing. so you know, when you talk about young people, people can be thrown out of a group, they can be insulted. they can be humiliated. you know, a person could put on a bomb and do something. not likely. it can't be totally ruled out just yet. >> jim, thanks so much. we can go ahead and guess that there is image riff this person already that investigators are looking at. if it suits the purposes of the investigation, i'm guessing that by the time americans wake up tomorrow morning, we will have imagery if they want us to help disseminate that imagery. let's go to the scene in manchester. michael is a reporter for itv
among our sister networks, and michael, i know you're familiar with manchester and have lived there for some time now. what has this done to the city streets in the second largest city in the uk? >> good evening, brian. let me tell that you manchester coming up at 4:00 this morning feels nothing like the city that i love and have come to call my home for the last year and a half since i left london. i'm currently standing on the busiest shopping street, the busiest shopping street for bars. a couple hundred meters away from where the explosion happened about five hours ago. right now, apart from the enormous police presence, there is nobody here. it feels surreally quiet. >> tell us about, does manchester have any history in this type of thing? i know it's been a decade since the uk has had a -- this kind of
suicide bombing. >> absolutely not. this is nothing we are used to at all. this is a city that is very humble. the people here are northern and very proud of that. it has a very small town feel even though it is a city and a suicide bomb attack if that is indeed what this was, and a terrorist attack is just not what the city would expect. i mean, it's 20 years this year. since the ira bomb manage manchester which destroyed large parts of the city. which has since been renovated and rebuilt. and it's come as a huge shock to everybody here what happened here. you know, these sort of things, i know the mayor of london came under fire when he said that living in london, you expect terrorist attacks. they're part of daily life he said. and if that is his opinion, fair enough. but up here, that's something we are absolutely not used to at all. >> i was guessing a moment ago
we'll have some imagery that the police will attempt to use, the media and the public, they must be looking at it already. but you know of no -- there's not going to be any public statement? >> well, we heard from the police just under an hour ago and they didn't really tell us anything we hadn't already heard in statements. obviously, at least 19 killed and we've heard from the northwest ambulance service just a few moments ago that 59 people who have been injured in this attack. yes. >> and part of covering this event is that this started as a happy event, and i'm guessing a great night in manchester. home to the largest arena in the uk. i think it's second largest if you include all europe. a big deal concert for fans of ag ariana grande.
>> absolutely. i heard there were 21,000 people in the arena earlier tonight. you know, families, young children who you know this could have been their first concert, their first experience in that kind of live music event. it's horrifying to think that that is what they will take away from this experience, if as horrifying if they even survived it. >> michael worrall from itv in the uk reporting from the streets of manchester. michael, thank you very much. ariana grande has indeed put out a statement on behalf of her and her team. it reads tonight "our hearts are broken. words cannot express our sorrow for the victims and families harmed in this senseless attack." imagine of course, how they feel. ariana grande all her backing musicians, management, this by all accounts took place after the last note of the encore just as the event had stopped.
the house lights had come up. by most of the accounts we have heard so far tonight, the house lights had come up. the audio was over, and people heard this kind of deep rumble, a concussion. there was smoke that came with it. that, of course, add t added to of panic, the last thing any of those 21,000 fans were thinking of was how to get out of this venue quickly and how to react in an instant. shawn, this is not to use a ghoulish cliche, but this is the definition of terrorism, if true. >> that's exactly what terrorists want to do. they want to strike fear and terror in the hearts of citizens. they want to get some notoriety for their cause. they use these types of events to raise funds to radicalize others and recruit others. so these types of incidents are
specifically made to do that, to create that chaos and fear. going back to what jeremy had said earlier, i also agree that we have to look at the total jihadi population when we're talking about who may have done this. there is this competition still in al qaeda, believe me, they've been pushed to the rear of the line are looking to make the type of headlines and the news coverage that will allow them to do this as a marketing event. how do we raise funds, get more followers, how do we recruit people willing to take this ultimate step in order to promote the cause. these are the exact types of incidents, brian that these groups are looking to promote. >> bill bratton, did the thought cross your mind that the president is not over seas but in the middle east tonight. >> certainly did. we're all aware of the many meetings he's having over there and the major thrust was to try and unite that part of the world in joining us in fighting this form of terrorism.
so here's an extraordinarily vivid and brutal example of what we're trying to fight. >> and, of course, the fight here domestically has to do with something you not only instituted but also accelerated and added to in new york city, and that is just visibility, flood the zone, let them wonder what you're up to and what you know, which is already sizable. >> exactly. that fortunately, new york has extraordinary amounts of personnel that many american cities don't have. but what we try to do actually do is maximize the numbers we have by constantly moving them around. there will be some officers on fixed posts but they're moved during the day constantly. so the idea is that a terrorist that never quite knows in new york city, particularly in the areas of high interest whether it be times square, the sporting stadiums when the police are
going to be there. the reality is we're there all the time in some locations such as times square. >> we apologize for this, the video we're forced to repeat. and it often is repeated over and over and over again to the point of annoyance is what we're limited to using. remember, it's the middle of the night where this has happened. in manchester and everyone who was there and involved is still no doubt, reacting to the shock of it all. social media started to light up in the first minutes after we got the first reports that something had exploded. that there had been a concussion just at the end of an ariana grande concert at the manchester arena. the largest indoor arena in all of the uk, by the way. full seating capacity in a concert configuration. that includes tonight. meaning you have floor seating that you normally wouldn't have,
say, for a sporting event is just about 21,000 people, and it was a sellout crowd tonight. the concert was a huge success. just as it ended. and these were the scenes you can almost surmise from this video that's been running ought night, these look like perhaps parents of concert goers. this was their meetup point at the base of the stairs coming out of the arena. if you go down another level, it's victoria station. so you go down stair and escalators to trains. but this is the place where the crowd would kind of empty out into the coming down two whole flights of stairs from the venue. people don't yet nope why the crowds were reacting the way they were. especially people who were inside and on the other side from the blast. but you see on the bottom of your screen the numbers that have not sadly been changing for better.
19 killed, 59 is the latest number of injured in this blast at the uk arena. the manchester arena in manchester in the north of england. we have just turned into the 11:00 eastern hour here on the east coast. and to all viewers joining us for our broadcast tonight of the 11th hour, we want to let you know, we will be talking about the presidents' day, his travels, the geopolitics that formed the backdrop of today, and at least one devastating newspaper story tonight about the still new trump presidency. we will get to that in just a few moments. but first, the reason we have been in live rolling breaking news coverage tonight. the word that at the manchester arena, the largest in the uk, after a conce